Over the weekend, Apple and HTC settled all of the long running patent suits that both companies had filed against each other in multiple jurisdictions. Although few details of the settlement were released in the two sentence press release that included brief quotes from HTC and Apple, the companies did state the the they had reached a “global settlement” that included dismissal of all current lawsuits. The companies also specified that the license extends to current and future patents held by both parties for the next ten years. The remainder of the terms, including the financial terms, are confidential.
And so one of the earliest and longest patent battles over smartphones ended quietly. Although no monetary terms were disclosed, it is likely that HTC is paying a royalty to Apple in order to put an end to the litigation. The impact on HTC from the Apple lawsuits was significant, hurting both its stock price and its ability to timely ship product due to the exclusion order Apple obtained at the ITC. As a result of the settlement, HTC will now be able to focus on making and selling products instead of litigation. That can only be a positive for HTC.
But what about Apple?